Hundreds of individuals and representatives from 40 countries are expected to meet in Cologne, Germany on June 12-13, for the 15th annual International Conference of the European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA).
Europe has seen a revival of industrial hemp production and manufacturing since the early 1990s. According to EIHA, European hemp cultivation has picked up dramatically over the last seven years, from around 8,000 hectares (19,768 acres) in 2011 to 26,000 hectares (64,247 acres) in 2016 to about 43,000 (106,255 acres) hectares last year.
EIHA says the expansion of hemp cultivation in Europe is being driven mainly by “demand in the food sector,” as well as the relatively recent debut of cannabidiol (CBD) products in European markets.
“Here too demand is high,” the organization said, “but cannot be met sufficiently due to a patchwork of national regulations.”